The spiritual proposal of the DCC
The experience of volunteering is open to all, believers or not. It is an opportunity to deepen or discover the faith. Volunteering has a pastoral dimension: by putting the Gospel into action, volunteers and DCC allies contribute to the Church’s mission. Supported by the sending of the bishops, the DCC makes proposals to help move forward in the faith.
Living a spiritual experience and witnessing
In southern host countries, religion is a reality for many people. The DCC’s partners are mainly local development actors linked to local Catholic churches or church organizations: parish networks, congregations, associations recognized by local episcopates.
The volunteers are sent by the Church in France to local churches that have expressed their need. This cooperation between churches makes it possible to enter into a movement of communion dedicated to serve human being.
Volunteerism has a testimony to deliver : through its service to the poorest, in the name of its faith or the values that inspire its commitment, each volunteer bears witness to what guides his or her life. This is recalled by the volunteers’ sending out to missions by the bishops, on the last day of the preparation course before departure.
The spiritual journey proposed by the DCC
Throughout his life course, the volunteer will be able to live a spiritual journey through different stages.
– During the training sessions, prayer times, Eucharistic celebrations and readings take place during weekends and workshops. During the orientation session, he can express the wish to share the life of a religious community during his voluntary service.
– At the end of his preparation to departure, the volunteer is sent on mission by a bishop, on behalf of the Church of France to the Southern Churches.
– Throughout his mission, the volunteer can ask for spiritual sponsorship of a religious community based in France.
– After returning from his mission and if he wishes, the volunteer can participate in a spiritual retreat organized in conjunction with the “Centre Manrèse de la Compagnie de Jésus”.
Le renouveau de l’Église passe à travers le témoignage offert par la vie des chrétiens eux-mêmes pour que resplendisse la Parole de vérité que le Seigneur nous a laissée.
Benoît XVI – Message à l’Eglise de France le 24 mars 2012
An experience of life
Volunteering is an adventure of the same order as a pilgrimage: to set out on a journey, to give up the daily routine of life, to accept to be humbly welcomed. This path can involve painful stages: loneliness, incomprehension, revolt…
The pastoral dimension of the DCC is at the heart of these experiences of displacement. Every human experience is in fact an experience of God and it leads to deepening one’s faith, to actualizing one’s way of believing. The DCC representatives (chargés de mission), each in their own way, accompany this journey through frequent contacts and during their annual visit.
The vocational dimension
Two years of volunteering can help define a life orientation. Volunteers were able to take advantage of the distance and the depth of the experience to let themselves be enlightened on a choice.
They can find people who can accompany them on this journey. The presence of varying profiles among the volunteers of the DCC – couples, singles, religious… – allows everyone to find their place.